Star Wars: The Old Republic Two Million Accounts Larger

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Star Wars: The Old Republic Two Million Accounts Larger

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The once ailing MMORPG has gained two million new accounts following the switch to free-to-play.

When Star Wars: The Old Republic first launched, it looked like it could be the game to challenge World of Warcraft's dominance of subscription-based MMOs. Its subscription base was the fastest growing in the genre's history, with more than 1.7 million people joining the game in less than two months. Things didn't stay rosy for long, though. Despite high early subscription rates, players began to leave the game. In an attempt to boost its faltering membership, the game's publisher, Electronic Arts, decided to switch The Old Republic to a free-to-play model in late 2012. It's a move that seems to have paid off. In the months since, The Old Republic has added more than two million new players.

This boost in membership was announced by Jeff Hickmen, executive producer of The Old Republic, on the game's development blog. In addition to discussing the increase in subscriptions, Hickman also acknowledged some of the issues that may have driven players away in the game's early days. "We were starting to lose subscribers and players were growing frustrated," said Hickman. "In fairness, many of the complaints were justified. In an effort to address everything, we just weren't sufficiently focused on improving the core experience." Key among the complaints of many players was a lack of content following the game's story heavy main quests. In response, Bioware and EA have been working on several updates, including one, soon-to-be-released, that will allow for in-game same-sex relationships, though not to the extent that some were hoping for.

Hickman also acknowledged that despite some the improvements that have been made since it launched, there are still issues to resolve in The Old Republic. "We will keep at it, I promise," said Hickman. "We'll keep listening to your feedback and continue to dedicate ourselves to making the game the best it can be. Nothing is more important to us than getting it right."

In all likelihood, EA and Bioware can't afford to get it wrong. According to some estimates EA spent close to $500 million making The Old Republic. That's not the sort of investment you can just shrug off if things don't work out.

Source: Game Informer

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Well I was glad to read this; then again I'm one of those few people who actually seemed to like the game.

Uh, 2 million new accounts created, not 2 million new subscriptions. That means 2 million people bothered to register their e-mail.

And the SGR (same gender romance) is not free nor is it out yet. It is part of the upcoming Makeb expansion which costs $10-$20 depending on whether you subscribe or are F2P.

I know SWTOR isn't big news anymore, but if you are going to link the blog, the least you could do is actually read it yourself before reporting on it.

The important question is how many people are PAYING for The Old Republic? F2P games have millions of subscribers because they're free to play, doesn't mean they actually play the game.

Two million new subscriptions = The Chinese have invaded.[1]

Really, this doesn't mean much other than there are two million accounts. Most likely, A good 1/11 are inactive and 1/13 are bots/spam accounts.

[1] just a little joke

Well, i guess i'll be the optimist and say that it's nice to see the game build some more popularity with its free to play transition. Hopefully there's enough income from people being subscribed and actually buying things in the in-game store to allow the game to continue going forward. I might just have to go and download this game in a month's time or so, if the player base keeps increasing and Bioware improves and fine-tunes the issues with the game.

mad825:

Really, this doesn't mean much other than there are two million accounts. Most likely, A good 1/11 are inactive and 1/13 are bots/spam accounts.

Would love to know where this statistic of yours originates from.

Always enjoyed the game, and the amount of crying I saw simply because it was by EA was unbelieveable and undeserved. Here's hoping it remains active beyond this stage.

2 million, ok but how many of them are paying? I played the game for about 3 months back when it was still just P2P and stopped after doing the Jedi main stories and most of the smuggler. My account is still there but I have not toched it since this time last year. This really does not mean all that much.

2 million? I don't believe it. Not 2 million active accounts because this is the game with the worst F2P system ever. Seriously pay to run? What kinda crap is that.

So you guys think this is all just a Jedi mind trick?

Karathos:

mad825:

Really, this doesn't mean much other than there are two million accounts. Most likely, A good 1/11 are inactive and 1/13 are bots/spam accounts.

Would love to know where this statistic of yours originates from.

Never stated them as fact. Stop acting smug and read it properly next time.

And yet, even "full servers" are basically dead.
Number of accounts means basically nothing alone.

I play it, I like it. It's got Jedi and no gorram Gungans. F2p is bit of a kick to the teeth, from what I hear.

mad825:

Karathos:

mad825:

Really, this doesn't mean much other than there are two million accounts. Most likely, A good 1/11 are inactive and 1/13 are bots/spam accounts.

Would love to know where this statistic of yours originates from.

Never stated them as fact. Stop acting smug and read it properly next time.

Never said you stated it as fact. I said I would love to know where the statistic originates from.

Stop being so confrontational and read it properly next time.

They're undoubtedly counting accounts that were made and only used once, or for that matter accounts that were never used once in that count.

ah, yes. two million subscribers...
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I found their f2p implementation so insulting to those of us who had previously bought the game and been paid subscribers that I uninstalled and won't return until they revisit their restrictions. The worst is how they limit or omit quest rewards entirely, closely followed by increased commendation prices for f2p players. If they wanted to do that for the lowest level account holders who had never bought a box, that would be somewhat understandable, if still a pretty bad idea, but as it stands the game never misses a chance to remind you what a second class citizen you are for not paying a subscription.

hazabaza1:
And yet, even "full servers" are basically dead.
Number of accounts means basically nothing alone.

I'm not sure exactly where you get that but I know that the Imperial Fleet is normally sporting 250+ players at high times and 100+ at low times, with a few hundred more on Drummond Kaas and normally a good 40-90 on the bigger planets.

Those "full servers" are actually quite full.

TWEWYFan:
Well I was glad to read this; then again I'm one of those few people who actually seemed to like the game.

You are not alone!

Saviordd1:

hazabaza1:
And yet, even "full servers" are basically dead.
Number of accounts means basically nothing alone.

I'm not sure exactly where you get that but I know that the Imperial Fleet is normally sporting 250+ players at high times and 100+ at low times, with a few hundred more on Drummond Kaas and normally a good 40-90 on the bigger planets.

Those "full servers" are actually quite full.

Huh, I was scouting around level 15-ish areas about a month or two ago and it was a ghost town. The fleet had a few people here and there, but comparing it to other MMOs, it wasn't a good sign.
Maybe I just played at the wrong time.

Their F2P model isn't very good. The game is too restricted for the F2P-accounts and they even have P2Win in it since you either need a prototype unlock or subscription to wear prototype gear (best rated gear available atm).
Their payment system with these coins is also pretty lame since everything in the shop costs strange amounts (not to mention is rather expensive). This basically leads to the situation where no matter what option of coin amount you choose it is guaranteed that after a purchase in the shop you will have some dead coins lying around (not enough to buy something useful)... another few dollars for EA...
I would welcome a law that would force these companies (e.g. also Microsoft and their MS Points or NC Soft, EnMasse etc.) to abolish their fictional currencies and show real money prices on these items as well as direct purchase system. No more money gifts for these assholes.

I think SW:ToR is in no position to charge for the expansion and I hope they will soon after release realize that.
The game itself is not bad, its just nothing special either. It was mishandled at launch and is still mishandled as F2P.

I still play this game. Its enjoyable to me. I love the PvP. And yes, I pay to play this game. Why? Cause Id like to think that paying will help fund more content and improve the game as a whole.

I'm thinking people don't eally like F2P games, they just want to try out MMO's before buying them, and probably why most accounts are inactive

Accounts and subscribers is an important distinction to make. On one hand you have a group of people who are payin x amount of money a month to play your game. In another you have x amount of people playin your game with no idea who is spendin money on what.

Really I expected more than 2 million accounts. Even ignorin how many of those are spambots or people who gave it a single try for a weekend and gave up, that number just seems low. That's only 300k more than they had subscribers at one point. Compared to somethin like say....LotRO which saw a jump of somethin like 400% in actual payin customers, this is pretty low.

On the flip side, now that I'm not actually payin for the game I do enjoy it a whole lot more. Back when it had a sub fee I actually felt like I was gettin ripped off when any number of game breakin bugs showed up. Now that its a F2P game I can just shrug it all off.

now for the important question;

how many of those are active players/subscribers?

cause one of those 2 million is mine but i haven't touched the game in months

I love this game. I realize how flawed it is at it's core (Hey guize letz make a wow-killer and make it exactly like wow lol) but the storyline and world are awesome enough to keep me playing. I'll never subscribe since I don't play it regularly enough to justify the monthly fee, but I'm quite willing to fork over some cash for an expansion here or a snazzy mount there.

I do hope the game stays healthy enough to give us more story and more classes.

TWEWYFan:
Well I was glad to read this; then again I'm one of those few people who actually seemed to like the game.

I like the game, I'm just not sure why; it's some what of a chore to play and it doesn't seem to like me very much. I REALLY like my characters however.

The article is hilarious, implying that the most important update for a content-lacking game are same sex relationships, like this is some kind of a sex game or something. And the inaccurate wording in the bold text.

I find this article to be below standard for the Escapist.

It doesn't matter if they managed to get 2 million f2p subscriptions. At the end of the day you can't defeat math. This turd of a game cost somewhere nearing half a billion USD to make. even 2 million people buying in game hats aren't going to even begin to dent that debt. And if the game can never recoup its initial development costs, exactly how long do you think an outfit like EA will keep pouring money into further development? (Here's a hint, how long have we been hearing about this magical gay marriage expansion now? When exactly is the release date? So yeah they have a handful or people working on it at best).

Games like LotRo or EQ2 could be saved with f2p, because the costs they needed to make up were not unreasonable, and were a reachable goal for a f2p cash shop profit model. 10, 20 or even $50 million may be achieved. But for $250 to $500 million? you're not going to hit that with a niche MMO that has already failed once in the market. And Oh boy won't the wailing and gnashing of teeth be spectacular when EA's accounting department finally drops the hammer and takes the whole mess as a tax write off.

hazabaza1:

Saviordd1:

hazabaza1:
And yet, even "full servers" are basically dead.
Number of accounts means basically nothing alone.

I'm not sure exactly where you get that but I know that the Imperial Fleet is normally sporting 250+ players at high times and 100+ at low times, with a few hundred more on Drummond Kaas and normally a good 40-90 on the bigger planets.

Those "full servers" are actually quite full.

Huh, I was scouting around level 15-ish areas about a month or two ago and it was a ghost town. The fleet had a few people here and there, but comparing it to other MMOs, it wasn't a good sign.
Maybe I just played at the wrong time.

Wrong time, wrong server. The West Coast servers are always dead on East Coast times and so on.

Then again I tend to spend a lot of time in game during the weekends and not so much the week, that could be part of my counting.

Dear BiowarEA,

Overhaul your space game. Less Starfox, more X-Wing vs TIE Fighter. Heck, I'd take Rogue Squadron in a pinch.

I got two problems with this news article. One, two million new accounts doesn't mean two million new subscribers. Two, EA did not spent $500 million making TOR. That number is absurd, and I get pissed off every time I see it repeated with the same caveat "according to some estimates." The estimate always comes from the same analyst, who included the purchase of Bioware as a "development cost" for TOR. And I keep seeing it popped up in news on the Escapist because it's the most eye-catchingly ludicrous estimate they can find a source for.

Bioware said close to launch that TOR was budgeted to remain profitable at a minimum of 500,000 subscribers. That number makes no sense if the game cost half a billion dollars, unless you think "profitable" means "it will take seven months of subscriptions just to break even."

Anyway. From my experience playing the game, the biggest consumers of TOR's new cash shop are actually the subscribers. It turns out if you're already $15 deep into a game, it's easy to fork out $15 more for a new speeder or a Darth Malak outfit.

does anyone know if they still punish people who play for free? i heard its fun if you go with the subscription, but for the people who play for free, its so limiting that it makes the game a chore to play. also, is finding groups easier now? one reason i cancelled my subscription last year was because my friends dont play it, so finding people for group missions could take a very long time and i dreaded getting them because i knew it would be me just standing there going "Looking for group" for an hour or so. honestly, i could deal with the game treating me like shit for not having a subscription, if i could just consistently find a group

00slash00:
does anyone know if they still punish people who play for free? i heard its fun if you go with the subscription, but for the people who play for free, its so limiting that it makes the game a chore to play. also, is finding groups easier now? one reason i cancelled my subscription last year was because my friends dont play it, so finding people for group missions could take a very long time and i dreaded getting them because i knew it would be me just standing there going "Looking for group" for an hour or so. honestly, i could deal with the game treating me like shit for not having a subscription, if i could just consistently find a group

The F2P system is pretty shit but they've added a group finder that is really quite easy to use. You pick which flashpoints or ops you want to queue for, set your spec, then it automatically sets you up with a group.

It's really something that should have been in the game to start with, but I think it fixes your problem.

bastardofmelbourne:

00slash00:
does anyone know if they still punish people who play for free? i heard its fun if you go with the subscription, but for the people who play for free, its so limiting that it makes the game a chore to play. also, is finding groups easier now? one reason i cancelled my subscription last year was because my friends dont play it, so finding people for group missions could take a very long time and i dreaded getting them because i knew it would be me just standing there going "Looking for group" for an hour or so. honestly, i could deal with the game treating me like shit for not having a subscription, if i could just consistently find a group

The F2P system is pretty shit but they've added a group finder that is really quite easy to use. You pick which flashpoints or ops you want to queue for, set your spec, then it automatically sets you up with a group.

It's really something that should have been in the game to start with, but I think it fixes your problem.

Does it only apply to Flashpoint and Ops? I never reached endgame and I know Flashpoints are extremely limited in the free to play model. What I was talking about just the normal missions you get from NPCs that are just like, "Clear out this cave" or something, and suggest playing it with two or more players

00slash00:
Does it only apply to Flashpoint and Ops? I never reached endgame and I know Flashpoints are extremely limited in the free to play model. What I was talking about just the normal missions you get from NPCs that are just like, "Clear out this cave" or something, and suggest playing it with two or more players

It is limited to flashpoints, operations and daily hubs, sadly. That means you're stuck using /1 if you want to find a group for a heroic.

How easy it is to do that depends one what heroic you're doing. The daily heroics are usually part of a useful weekly quest, so it's easy enough to find a group for them. The low-level heroics and most of the Corellia level 50 heroics, however, don't give useful rewards, so no-body does them.

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